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Annual Healthcare Forum

24th Annual Delaware Healthcare Forum

The 24th Annual Delaware Healthcare Forum took place on October 29, 2020 in a virtual format for the first time! Health care and health policy experts from across the state provided informative presentations on a range of topics to hundreds of attendees.
Here are a few highlights from the event:
During the first session, DHA President & CEO Wayne Smith led a panel of experts in a review of key government actions this year from legislation to executive orders and state and federal waivers. Meredith Stewart Tweedie, J.D. (ChristianaCare), Bruce Leshine, MBA, J.D., (Beebe Healthcare) and Meghan C. Livingston, J.D. (Nemours A I DuPont Hospital for Children) discussed how these orders impacted everything from allowing for additional healthcare workforce support during the pandemic to telehealth.
Continuing the discussion on telehealth, Bayhealth’s Jonathan Kaufmann, D.O., Chief Medical Information Officer led a robust panel on how telehealth has evolved this year. John Fink, MD, MSHQS (Bayhealth) and Nicholas Moriello (Highmark Delaware) provided data illustrating the tremendous growth in telehealth utilization during the pandemic. Geoff Christ, B.S. Pharmacy, J.D. (Delaware Division of Professional Regulation) rounded out the discussion with an update on the status of some of the telehealth flexibilities provided during the pandemic and noted that interstate compacts are becoming more important in discussions about the future of telehealth.
One of the highlights of the day was the CEO Panel where hospital leaders recounted the early days of the COVID-19 Pandemic. DHA’s Wayne Smith moderated the panel, which featured David Tam, MD, MBA, FACHE, President & CEO, Beebe Healthcare; Janice Nevin, MD, MPH, President & CEO, ChristianaCare; and Terry Murphy, President & CEO, Bayhealth. The CEOs discussed the major challenges they faced during the height of the pandemic and also highlighted the heroic efforts of the health care workers and team members at each of their facilities.
The Forum also provided the opportunity to honor some of those Delaware health care leaders who have gone above and beyond this year. DHA’s Wayne Smith presented Bayhealth’s John Van Gorp, SVP, Planning & Development with DHA’s Most Valuable PAC Player Award. He also presented Beebe Healthcare’s Marcy Jack, JD, BSN, CPHRM, Vice President, Chief Quality and Safety Officer with the Grass Roots Award. Chris Fraser MBA, FACHE (Westside Family Healthcare) presented the ACHE’s Senior-Level Healthcare Executive Regent’s Award in Delaware for 2020 to Lolita A. Lopez, FACHE, President & CEO, Westside Family Healthcare.
DHA’s Vice President, Megan Williams, DNP, APRN, FNP-C moderated a panel entitled “A SHOC to the System – What a State Health Operations Center does during a Public Health Emergency”. The top notch panel included several key leaders from the Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH), including DPH Director, Karyl T. Rattay, MD, MS, FAAP; Steve Blessing, MA, Chief, EMS & Preparedness Section, DPH; Rick Hong, MD, State Medical Director, DPH; and Diane Hainsworth, BSN, Director, Office of Emergency Medical Services, DPH. These DPH leaders provided the audience some insight into how the state mobilized in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and coordinated with Delaware’s health care systems and other key stakeholders.
The final panel, an ACHE panel discussion, focused on the financial implications of the push from inpatient to outpatient care. ChristianaCare CFO,Rob McMurray, MBA, CPA, moderated the discussion. Anthony D’Alonzo, PT, DPT, MBA (Bayada Home Health Care) provided the post-acute perspective and Brad Kirkes, MBA, MHA, OTR/L, CHT, FACHE (Bayhealth), Anuja Mohla, DO, CHCQM-PHYADV (ChristianaCare) and Bonnie Graham, CPA (ChristianaCare) discussed their experience with the push to outpatient care from the health system perspective.